Longitudinal study finds that early life trauma can negatively impact long-term health outlook

A recently published long-term study has shown that the effects of psychological and physical trauma can have echoes and repercussions even decades after the events themselves.

Dr Iaroslav Youssim and Dr Hagit Hochner of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem's School of Public Health led the study, which was published in the American Journal of Epidemiology and investigated mortality rates from specific diseases over the course of many years among Israel-based Holocaust survivors.

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The researchers analyzed death records of approximately 22,000 people who were followed-up from 1964 to 2016 and compared the rates of mortality from cancer and heart disease among survivors to the rates in individuals who did not live under Nazi occupation. 

Among women survivors, the study found a 15-percent higher rate of overall mortality and a 17-percent higher chance of dying from cancer, according to the study.

Among men, while overall death rates of the survivors were not appreciably different, mortality from cancer during the studied period was 14-percent higher among the survivor population and remarkably, the rate of mortality from heart disease was 39-percent higher. Read more at i24